Parthiv Patel questions Mohammed Siraj’s selection in the first Test

Mohammed Siraj

India suffered a 28-run defeat against England in the first Test of the five-match series in Hyderabad. The tourists overturned a 190-run first-innings deficit to emerge victorious in a riveting contest.

While England went in with only one frontline pacer in Mark Wood and three spinners in Jack Leach, Tom Hartley, and Rehan Ahmed for the first Test, India opted to play Jasprit Bumrah, and Mohammed Siraj alongside the spin trio of Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, and Axar Patel. Bumrah played a key role in the contest, as he bagged six wickets from the 24.4 overs he bowled in the match. However, his fellow seamer Siraj was only used for four overs in the first innings and seven in the second innings, finishing wicketless in both attempts.

Former India wicketkeeper Parthiv Patel felt that India could have played an extra batter in place of Siraj, who was sporadically used. He opined that this move would have allowed Kuldeep Yadav to play ahead of Axar Patel and add more variety to the spin-bowling department.

“There is no doubt that 3 spinners are enough, but I have a different perspective. You have used Siraj for only 6 or 7 overs throughout the Test match. Axar Patel played ahead of Kuldeep Yadav due to his batting abilities, as mentioned by Rohit Sharma before the Test match. If you need variety, you could pick Kuldeep ahead of Axar,” Parthiv told Jio Cinema.

“And if you are not using Siraj much, then why not play an extra pure batter. So, you will have three types of bowlers in Ashwin, Jadeja and Kuldeep, and the extra batter will add depth to the batting. And there’s no point playing someone if you are going to give him only 7 overs,” he added.

After the first Test ended in four days, India will have an extra day to analyse their loss and chalk out plans for the next Test, which begins on Friday, February 2, at the Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam.